Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Chicago: a lesson in culture and diet abandonment

A few more pictures from Chicago...did I say it's my favorite place to go? I did say that I adore it, right?
 I... do... adore... it. 

The Lincoln Park Zoo is always on the top of our "to-do" list when we go to Chicago. It's free, which is fantastic, (well, free to those of us that don't pay the ridiculous amount of taxes they have to pay up there) and for a family with this many kids, we seriously need some free activities. The boys love the lion house, the lions aren't separated from the humans by glass enclosures, but rather, iron (steel?) bars, so that when they roar, or even yawn, you can hear them. 

There is an outside area to the lion house, and THAT does have glass partitions thankfully, because here's what we saw that day:

Yeah, that's her face, right next to my kids' faces.  Yipes.

We also love to go to the beach. It's a beach unlike those here in Florida...nothing there wants to eat you, except for the occasional aggressive seagull (I think they might eat you, if given the opportunity). The water is FREEZING, but that's never stopped my kids from getting in it. It has stopped me every time, however...I'm not looking to have a heart attack there on the pristine shores of Lake Michigan.  Here's my little darlings, leaping wildly over the crashing waves:

 Okay, so I took a small amount of liberties with that description...

Now, don't think that this is, by any stretch of the imagination, the only things we do up there, there's a million things to do...but if I may, let's get right to the "food" portion of our virtual tour, shall we?

The food in Chicago is amazing. It is delicious, for the most part culturally authentic, and almost always inexpensive.  (Except for the deep dish pizza, it's pricey, I'm not sure why that is.)  I love to eat a hot dog with 11 items on top, or Indian food from a buffet on Belmont Avenue. There are so many places to choose from, well, lets just say I came back 5 pounds heavier. No lie...just ask my pants.

We ate at a high priced fancy hotel downtown one night, just me and my mom. My brother "J" runs the kitchen there, yep: Head Chef extraordinaire.  You cannot imagine the thrill of sitting down to a beautiful table, in a gorgeous hotel and saying to your chef-brother..."Hit me". 

He had two questions before we got started: 

1.  "Are you hungry?" (Cue very large grin on his face.)

2.  "Is there anything you won't eat?"

Our replies:  Yep and Nope!

Here's some of what we had...the photo quality is stinky, I know, I only had my cell phone.

This is fois grais two ways...and there are zero ways to describe it's awesome-ness.

This is lobster with forbidden rice and a curry sauce that would make you sell your best Brighton sandals in order to buy some more.

And this is sea scallop with pork belly and yes, those are slices of truffle you see. OMG. So good.

All of these wonderful things (and this isn't everything we ate, we felt a little foolish taking so many kept it to a minimum) came with garnishes of the most wonderful vegetables: little tomatoes, baby eggplant and turnips, it was just beyond words it was so good.

Apparently (from what I heard) the waitstaff there were very impressed with our ability to eat everything from the numerous plates set in front of us.  We try to excel in everything, you know.

Soooo, go to Chicago. Take your kids and your wallet, see everything you have time to see..
 And don't forget your stretchy pants.

1 comment:

  1. Ha Doreen- I know all about Chicago cullinary! Extraordinary- to say the least! One of my favorite too, Oh and also, San Fran, NOLA and believe it or not- SOBO. Man, eating my way across the states right into the fat house!


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